Friday, April 17, 2015

Let's go to the zoo! - part one of two

So it was my birthday last Saturday and I gave myself a photography trip to the zoo to celebrate it. I had wanted to go forever, but since a day-trip from my island usually takes three days if you want to make a real day of it, I kept postponing it. But no more. I booked a hotel and off I went.

Above is my hotel. It is a lovely cosy family hotel right in the centre of the town of Emmen just a few hundred meters from the zoo.  Since I've moved to the island I've had to stay in a lot of hotels and often they are staffed with pretty young ladies in skirt suits looking all correct and perfect. Here I was attended by middle aged people in jeans and I loved it. Everything was very clean and comfortable and the people were nice. And my favorite part: they bake their own bread for breakfast! It was still warm when served. So delicious!

But I didn't come for bread did I? I came for the zoo! Let me take you on a two post trip along with me. The Emmen Zoo or as it is officially called "Noorder Dierenpark Emmen" is quite beautiful and was very modern in it's policies when they started many years ago, meaning they didn't want animals in small cages, but in much larger habitats. Now they are slowly running out of space and things are starting to age here and there, so they are making a brand new zoo outside of town. But as long as that's not finished I still got to see the 'old' zoo, which is in the middle of the town.

The entrance of the zoo.

I had come to take many pictures and I did, but it was harder than I expected. Because a lot of the habitats for the animals are bigger there are spots installed where people can look, but they are often seperated from the animals with glass and glass is not ideal to photographs through. Of course this was not the case with every animal, but the more dangerous ones (lions, tigers and bears, oh my) of course cannot be let out in the open. The glass meant a lot of reflection and sometimes hazy pictures, because the glass was not perfectly clean. Quite annoying. With a little help from a photo editing program and positioning myself more strategically than I would like to I have however been able to take some nice shots. And of course the zoo has plenty of open spaces where animals can roam moderately free. There are also many indoor 'gardens' themed after different continents where the animals can almost be touched (although I'm not sure I'd like to touch a crocodile for instance).

Anyway, I took over 300 pictures and have narrowed them down to a couple of dozen for your viewing pleasure.

So...let's go to the zoo!

I'll post the rest of the pictures on Sunday. Tomorrow I will post the winner of my birthday giveaway. There's still time to enter today, so if you haven't yet, go over there and comment.

Have a wonderful and artsy weekend all!